Maria Sharapova incurs wrath of Indian cricket fans: 'I don't know of Sachin Tendulkar'

The Wimbledon regular told a press conference that she did not know who the legendary batsman was

It’s not been the best week for tennis ace Maria Sharapova.

The five-time Grand Slam champion bowed out of Wimbledon on Tuesday after being defeated by German Angelique Kerber, then almost immediately incurred the wrath of Indian cricket fans during her post-match press conference.

Some people would be forgiven for not knowing a legend in a different discipline to themselves, though they may operate in the same field or industry, but Ms Sharapova has been lambasted for not knowing ‘cricketing God’ Sachin Tendulkar.

World-renown batsman Mr Tendulkar had watched Ms Sharapova on 28 June from the Royal Box at Centre Court, witnessing her third-round win against American Alison Riske.

After her defeat on Tuesday, she said David Beckham, who had been in attendance alongside Mr Tendulkar, was a “really nice person” and an “incredible football player,” the Times of India reports.

A reporter then replied: “Sachin Tendulkar was the other person who came in at the same time as David. Do you know who Sachin is?”

Unfortunately for Russia’s number one female player she did not.

Her admission induced fury among India’s fervent cricket fans, who promptly made #whoismariasharapova a trending topic worldwide on Twitter.

Numerous memes, doctored pictures and outraged messages flooded the social networking site, while the Hindustan Times said that she had ‘broken many hearts’.

Cricketer Sachin Tendulkar at centre court on 28 June The paper said: “We hope you read up on cricket soon, Maria. Because this population that comprises 17.5 per cent of the global population won't take not knowing Ten(times God)ulkar lightly.”

A legion of Mr Tendulkar's passionate followers took to the tennis player's official Facebook page to post some horrified, some abusive, messages.

While some have told her to "go to hell," others showed bitter disappointment: "We didn't expect this from you Sharapova."

Tens of thousands of incensed tweets and Facebook posts are punctuated with appeals for calm: "Cricket is not played in Russia. You should not expect people from non-cricket playing countries to know about cricket players."


Neither the French Open champion nor the cricketing icon have publicly commented on the furore.

READ MORE: Maria Sharapova stars in Wimbledon-themed video
Ten years on: How Maria conquered Wimbledon
Should Maria Sharapova serve sugar?
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs People

Chief Executive

£28, 700: Whiskey Whiskey Tango: Property Management Company is seeking a brig...

COO / Chief Operating Officer

£80 - 100k + Bonus: Guru Careers: A COO / Chief Operating Officer is needed to...

HR Manager - Kent - £45,000

£40000 - £45000 per annum: Ashdown Group: HR Manager / Training Manager (L&D /...

HR Manager - Edgware, London - £45,000

£40000 - £45000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: HR Manager - Edgware, Lon...

Day In a Page

Isis is an hour from Baghdad, the Iraq army has little chance against it, and air strikes won't help

Isis an hour away from Baghdad -

and with no sign of Iraq army being able to make a successful counter-attack
Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

Turner Prize 2014 is frustratingly timid

The exhibition nods to rich and potentially brilliant ideas, but steps back
Last chance to see: Half the world’s animals have disappeared over the last 40 years

Last chance to see...

The Earth’s animal wildlife population has halved in 40 years
So here's why teenagers are always grumpy - and it's not what you think

Truth behind teens' grumpiness

Early school hours mess with their biological clocks
Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?

Hacked photos: the third wave

Why can no one stop hackers putting celebrities' private photos online?
Royal Ballet star dubbed 'Charlize Theron in pointe shoes' takes on Manon

Homegrown ballerina is on the rise

Royal Ballet star Melissa Hamilton is about to tackle the role of Manon
Education, eduction, education? Our growing fascination with what really goes on in school

Education, education, education

TV documentaries filmed in classrooms are now a genre in their own right
It’s reasonable to negotiate with the likes of Isis, so why don’t we do it and save lives?

It’s perfectly reasonable to negotiate with villains like Isis

So why don’t we do it and save some lives?
This man just ran a marathon in under 2 hours 3 minutes. Is a 2-hour race in sight?

Is a sub-2-hour race now within sight?

Dennis Kimetto breaks marathon record
We shall not be moved, say Stratford's single parents fighting eviction

Inside the E15 'occupation'

We shall not be moved, say Stratford single parents
Air strikes alone will fail to stop Isis

Air strikes alone will fail to stop Isis

Talks between all touched by the crisis in Syria and Iraq can achieve as much as the Tornadoes, says Patrick Cockburn
Nadhim Zahawi: From a refugee on welfare to the heart of No 10

Nadhim Zahawi: From a refugee on welfare to the heart of No 10

The Tory MP speaks for the first time about the devastating effect of his father's bankruptcy
Witches: A history of misogyny

Witches: A history of misogyny

The sexist abuse that haunts modern life is nothing new: women have been 'trolled' in art for 500 years
Shona Rhimes interview: Meet the most powerful woman in US television

Meet the most powerful woman in US television

Writer and producer of shows like Grey's Anatomy, Shonda Rhimes now has her own evening of primetime TV – but she’s taking it in her stride
'Before They Pass Away': Endangered communities photographed 'like Kate Moss'

Endangered communities photographed 'like Kate Moss'

Jimmy Nelson travelled the world to photograph 35 threatened tribes in an unashamedly glamorous style